Top Gear’s Richard Hammond joins The Secret Service for hidden camera show

New BBC1 Saturday night format will see the presenter playing pranks on the public with the help of actors and comedians

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Top Gear’s Richard Hammond is to make a return to the world of light entertainment as the host of a new BBC1 hidden camera show.

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The Secret Service will make its debut in a Saturday evening slot during 2013 and see Hammond hired by members of the public to play pranks on their family and friends with the help of a team of actors and comedians – his ‘secret service’.

Mark Linsey, BBC One’s controller of entertainment commissioning said: “Richard has proved to be an enormous treat for the Saturday night audience with his own unique brand of humour.

“I think the viewers are going to enjoy his Secret Service as much as they have Total Wipeout.”

The new show is being produced by Initial, the Endemol company behind the Hammond-fronted Total Wipeout, which was cancelled by the BBC in March.

“Following on from the great fun we’ve had with Total Wipeout, we’re delighted to be working with Richard Hammond again,” said Nick Samwell-Smith, creative director at Initial.

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“This exciting new hidden camera show will make for great family viewing on Saturday nights.”